Nick Wright, the host of FS1’s First Things First sports talk show, has some support among his peers ahead of his Wednesday match on High Stakes Duel against Phil Hellmuth. Former NFL wide receiver Brandon Marshall, a co-host on the show, made a bold prediction on the outcome of the $50,000 buy-in match.
In a 40-second rant, Marshall predicted the underdog, his FS1 pal, would come out victorious on Wednesday.
“Phil Hellmuth, nobody cares about your 15 bracelets, nobody cares about your 65 top finishes and all the other stuff, nobody cares,” Marshall says in the video. “Nick Wright is the man, you’re going down, okay? And you’re going to have to live with that, that’s going to be on your resume.”
Marshall talking trash to Hellmuth isn’t a surprise to anyone who followed his act in the NFL. During his 13-year NFL career, the former Chicago Bears wide receiver ran his mouth frequently, often calling out future opponents, but he usually backed it up on the field. The six-time Pro Bowler finished his borderline Hall of Fame career with over 12,000 receiving yards, 83 touchdowns, and ranks 16th all-time in receptions (970).
Pressure on the underdog
The former football star can’t control the outcome at the PokerGO Studio on Wednesday, but that didn’t stop him from popping off. Marshall, who joined the sports media after retiring from the NFL in 2018, still has it, at least when it comes to talking smack. He took some shots at Hellmuth, who is 6-0 on High Stakes Duel (3-0 vs. Daniel Negreanu and 3-0 vs. Antonio Esfandiari), and expressed confidence in his FS1 co-host during the pregame hype show on PokerGO.
Marshall, the former Chicago Bears wide receiver, didn’t stop there in his attacks.
“When Nick’s done with you, I want a little piece of you, too,” Marshall said, addressing the poker legend directly. “Nobody cares about your little game face … you’re going down. We know you’re a legend and respect all of that, but you are going down. It’s a new era, new wave, Nick Wright, let’s go baby, you know what time it is.”
Hellmuth positively unfazed
Hellmuth faced some trash talking from Negreanu and Esfandiari prior to beating both players three straight times on High Stakes Duel. This time around, he’s up against a wildcard in amateur poker player Nick Wright, who has spent the past 15 years as the host of sports talk radio and television shows, and who claims to be a competent player with plenty of cash game experience.
Wright and Marshall, along with Fox Sports personalities Jenna Wolfe and Kevin Wildes, host the popular FS1 national sports debate show, First Things First, which airs weekdays at 7:30 am ET. On Wednesday at 5 pm PT on PokerGO, Wright will step out from behind the microphone to compete in a $50,000 poker match against one of the game’s all-time greats.
Per High Stakes Duel rules, the losing player has the option to challenge the winner to a future rematch but must pay an additional $100,000 to get back into the game. Following Round 2, the loser, if a rematch is requested, would be required to put up $200,000 for Round 3. After three matches, the winning player has the option to cash out. Neither Hellmuth nor Wright have said how far they will go in this competition.